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Jiggy-Ninja
February 05, 2010, 03:15 PM
Good day peoples. This is my first review, but I hope to do this weekly from now on. I like the style that Underscore uses for Bleach, so my reviews try to mimic those parts that I like best, though I'm probably not yet as good with the witty captions as he is. Intro over (I'm not that good with them anyway), on to the main event!

Pics are from Mangastream.

Chapter 573 - The Name of This Age is "Whitebeard"

Two chapters ago, Ace got let out of his cuffs. If there is anything more disturbing than a fangirl scream, it is a fangirl scream coming from the mouth of a 19 year old man, which is what I wanted to do when I saw that moment. :D I don't know why, I just felt like sharing that.


London Bridge is falling down...falling down...falling down...
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We're not in London, and it's not a bridge, but damn it it works!

At the end of last chapter, Whitebeard let loose his by far most destructive attack yet, and damaged the main building of Marine HQ. Our first view in this chapter is a nice double page spread of the whole building falling down. It seems now that Ace is out of the way, Whitebeard has no reason to hold back anymore and can let loose his full power.

Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait....let's back up a second here. We've seen Whitebeard do some pretty awesome things so far. He rose a pair of gigantic ass tsunamis to try and crush Marineford, didn't even blink when all three Admirals attacked him (though he did squint a litte bit with Kizaru's attack), totally crushed two giants (both Vice Admirals) with as much visible effort as it takes to swat a fly, turned the whole island on it's side, stopped a rampaging paddleboat with one arm, and that was all holding back!?!?!? What the hell is this guy capable of when he lets loose with no inhibitions?

None of his crew want to leave him behind, but Whitebeard absolutely insists that they follow his order. The look on his face here says that he's already made up his mind, and won't take no for an answer. Some Marine party poopers interrupt the moment and try to kill the already severely injured Whitebeard, but he crushes their rude asses with a single swing of his bisento. We get another shot of some more of the pirates tearfully retreating and leaving their old man behind, and Ace is just staring with a blank look on his face. One wonders what is going through his mind while he's watching hid old man rampage like a mad man. Luffy is screaming in his ear trying to bring him to his senses, but it doesn't seem to be working very well.

The next panel deserves its own paragraph. It hammers home the fact that Whitebeard is dead serious. Emphasis on the "dead" part.

2 panels of the pirates retreating, yadda yadda yadda, and then we get Sengoku (who looks a little lame with his afro) confirming what I thought on the first page. Whitebeard is going all out now that Ace is safe, and plans to sink all of Marineford into the sea. Garp's OK too, and he gets up and nonchalantly brushes off his suit, commenting how Whitebeard wants to put a finish on the current age. Ah, turns out he's not totally OK though. That headfirst fall into the ground gave him a nice gash on his forehead. That might need some stitches.


Camera's ready, we're on in 5.
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Now, what's my motivation?

Buggy and co.'s Den Den Mushi is back on, so they can broadcast more ridiculousness to the world. And as expected, Buggy's pose in that panel is totally stupid and comical. But the next panel....he actually looks serious. I don't mean that Buggy is acting serious. Almost every time we've seen Buggy strike a pose since he was reintroduced in Impel Down, there has been some small element of comedy in it. Probably the coolest look he's had before was right after he was unfrozen. The snot drip ruined it a little, but is understandable since your nose does run when you get cold.

However, I see no comedy in that second panel. There is nothing in that picture except pure, unadulterated, fresh-squeezed awesome. It's quite hypnotizing, how cool Buggy looks there. I have hard time looking away. It really looks like he could do something.

Also, I just noticed with this panel that Buggy isn't wearing a pirate hat, it's a Marine hat with the logo crossed out. Don't you just love the little touches like that?

The people on Shabondy are all excited that there's a broadcast working again, wondering what the hell has been going on. All their questions will now be answered. Was Ace executed? Did Whitebeard really sell out his crew? What became of Whitebeard after Squad stabbed him? What were all those Kumabots doing there? What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow? How many licks does it really take to get to the center of a Tootsie-Pop?

Alas, 'tis not to be, for the person showing up dramaticaly through the clearing smoke is Buggy! If there was any doubt what the people thought of Buggy and his boasting, the next panel takes that doubt out back and shoots it like a dead horse.


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After that, more pirates trying to run away, more Marines trying to stop them...BORING. Whitebeard pops up behind them, saying that the Marine's opponent is him and him alone. The look of sheer horror on the Marines' faces when they realize just who is standing behind them is priceless. Whitebeard annahilates them and half the plaza with a monsterous swing of his bisento. Seriously, this guy is just totally bad ass.

Jaws, frozen as he was with his right arm snapped right off, hasn't been forgotten. A few pirates are trying to carry him to the ship, but drop him for some reason. Looks like one of them got hit by a cannon ball, but I can't tell. Maybe they just couldn't carry him very far. One of them shouts for Brenheim to come and carry Jaws. I think Brenheim is the really big guy whose hair looks like Scratchmen Apoo's, or it could be the Fishman. I don't know, don't really care. We'll find out eventually.

Ace is still doing that stupid blank staring, and Luffy is trying to get him moving. Turns out Ace has other plans, as he rushes to Whitebeard's side. Whitebeard, being the awesome guy that he is, just wants to know the answer to one question: Was Ace happy with him as a father? Without hesitation, Ace gives a heartfelt "Yes", which prompts Whitebeard to give a hearty laugh in response. Even just seeing his mouth, you can feel the joy in that laugh.

Jimbei comes along to break the trace and urges the brothers to haul ass to the ship. It seems that based on their heritage, the Marines are specifically targetting them. Not much of a surprise, since they are the biological sons of what are probably the two most hated men in the World Government's history. There's no way the Marines are going to let them go easily.

Boa gets an appearance expressing some concern for Luffy. Nothing important, but it's nice to see a pretty face amidst all the carnage and destruction. Though it does little to offset who next shows up. Sakazuki, more commonly know as Akainu. Even the back of his head is enough to spoil the best of moods.

He opens up a can of whoop-ass on some fodder pirates, and starts to diss them for fleeing as soon as they free Ace. Saving Ace was the only reason that the pirates were there, so it makes sense that they would leave once they had accomplished that. But Akainu is one of those "fairness, honor, and justice" idiots, and calls Whitebeard a coward and a loser, which stops Ace in his tracks. Please Ace, don't freakin' stop!!! There's no way at all that this can end well. We all know that Akainu's a dick, so just ignore it and keep running, can't you?


Don't you be talkin' 'bout my daddy like that, bitch!
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Well...yo momma SO ugly....and fat...and STUPID....

But, well, fitting with his powers, Ace has to be a hot head about Akainu's taunts, and tells him to take back what he said about Whitebeard. All the other pirates agree with me that Ace should ignore him and keep running, even Luffy who normally wouldn't take shit from anyone, but ace is adamant.

Of course, Akainu doesn't take back his words, and instead starts to elaborate on how much of a loser Whitebeard is. He was outdone by Roger and never became king. Rampaging around the seas, throwing his name around as he pleases, with a false family behind him. A man he called his son was swayed into stabbing him by mere words. (Seems like Squad somehow heard this, as he has a pained look on his face) That Whitebeard throwing his life away for such trash means he's just a loser. It goes on and on, each insult biting harder than the last. I revere Whitebeard as basically the image of a perfect man, but damn, listening to all this I can't help but believe it. I have to take a time out and remind myself just whose mouth these words are coming from. It's Akainu, the biggest asshole in One Piece outside of the Tenryuubito. He bombed the evacuation ship during the Ohara Buster Call. He killed a Marine that was trying to escape the battle. He tricked Squad into stabbing Whitebeard. Okay, now I feel better.

I must say, this exchange is masterfully done. It humanizes Akainu a great deal, and portrays him less as a heartless villain and more as a man that really believes in what he does. I can't help but feel the emotion in Akainu's final shout to Ace, though what emotion it is exactly I can't quite figure out. Frustration maybe? Whatever it is, both him and ace get pretty heated up by this exchange. Terrible cliche pun not intended, but I'm certainly not avoiding it.


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Like all arguments that get this heated, this one too degenerates into violence with some good, old-fashioned fisticuffs. Well, I don't know how old fashioned you can consider fire-magma boxing to be, but you get the idea. Ace gets the last word in edgewise, declaring Whitebeard to be the greatest pirate alive and that this age should be named after him, and trades blows with Akainu.

My first reaction to this panel is that Akainu is totally worthy of his title as an Admiral. His side of the clash is much bigger than Ace's, showing just how much power this guy has. Though what happens next is quite shocking. Ace gets burned!! What the hell! How can fire be burned?

Akainu explains that it is because of their elements, and that his is totally superior in every way to Ace's fire. Just because Ace is a Logia doesn't mean he can't be injured.

I'd like to stop here and make an observation. Except for Blackbeard, whose Logia is unique anyway, we've so far only seen Logias injured in 2 ways. The first was to use some sort of elemental weakness that prevented the Logia from using their powers to dodge the attack, and hit them with physical blows. Luffy used this method against Crocodile and Enel. The second method was to use a Haki enhanced attack, though Haki is still very mysterious so far, and the effectiveness of this may not be absolute, since Aokiji was able to survive being stabbed by Whitebeard (and we don't know if he used Haki or not).

In an SBS, Oda said that in Water 7, Garp was able to injure Luffy because Garp was punching him "in the soul". If we assume that Garp was using Haki to do that, and assume that Oda was being at least halfway serious (both of which I know are shaky assumptions), that could be a clue about Haki. That it doesn't inflict direct injury, but rather hits the soul of the person the attack is used on, and the strike to the soul can manifest into physical damage.

In contrast, Ace being burned is the first time that we have seen a Logia in their elemental state directly injured like this. It's more evidence that Logias aren't totally invincible like once thought.

Luffy shouts out of concern for Ace, and as he catches his breath tells him he's already at his limit. Seems that second dose os Tension Hormones is wearing off now. At the same time, Ace's Vivre Card (or Bible card, whatever it's called) falls out of his hat onto the ground.

Akainu spouts more garbage about how Luffy and Ace's bloodlines are a "grave sin", and that they are brothers makes it even worse. There is no way at all that the Marines will let them get away. He starts going down on Luffy (no, not that kind of "going down"! Horny bastards), and Luffy just has that complete "deer in the headlights" look as a fist made of magma comes flying at his face.


Nasea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach, diarreha.
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Want some Pepto-Bismal? Looks like you need it.

Ace jumps in between the two of them to protect Luffy, and takes a magma fist to the stomach. Given what we just learned about how Ace's and Akainu's Fruits relate to each other, saying that this is a pretty serious wound would be a terrible understatement. Luffy is dumbstruck by this, though Marco's and Vista's reactions are much more comedic. I can't see Atomos's very well, but I bet he's the same way. Our final shot for this chapter is of Ace's Vivre Card, which seems tohave returned to full size, burning away again.

Random Musings

I don't think Ace will die. Oda has a well established habit of not killing off important characters. He has, however, done a wonderful job of keeping this war very delicately balanced, so that even at this late stage it's unclear exactly how it'll end up. We learned some important information about the mortality of Logias, saw Whitebeard rampage a bit, and Akainu got some character development. All in all, a great chapter.

I won't even bother predicting. They'll all be wrong anyway. The only thing I've ever managed to predict right was Akainu's Devil Fruit power.

MAX_COLA_POWER!
February 05, 2010, 04:44 PM
Wow, first review and I have to say, real Underscore quality with your own taste, very well donw JN^^. I gotta say, I know a war is supposed to have moments when both sides get an advantage from time to time, BUT COME ON!, IT'S BEEN HALF A YEAR ALREADY! BRING BACK THE STRAWHATS AND GET HANCOCK ON THAT SHIP ALREADY SO SHE CAN JOIN!, phew, sorry about that. Anyway, Ace won't die, but Sakazuki REALLY needs to get a savage beating here, after all he's done. I swear, he's like a combination of Danzo and Kaname, tricking others and doing WHATEVER it takes to make sure his so-called justice gets carried out. Luffy will need to unlock his haoushoku to full power just for a solid punch in the face to send him flying. I wanted Lu to punch Sengoku, but if he can at least dislocate Sakazuki's face, I'll be satisfied. Anyway, keep it up with the reviews^^.

chess4
February 05, 2010, 06:02 PM
great review, keep it up

enraI
February 06, 2010, 01:55 AM
Great Review!!!!!! Ace kinda piss me off on this chpt tho..
Btw I never thought i hate a character on one piece until taht ole fart Akainu same along 8-)
[hr]

Wow, first review and I have to say, real Underscore quality with your own taste, very well donw JN^^. I gotta say, I know a war is supposed to have moments when both sides get an advantage from time to time, BUT COME ON!, IT'S BEEN HALF A YEAR ALREADY! BRING BACK THE STRAWHATS AND GET HANCOCK ON THAT SHIP ALREADY SO SHE CAN JOIN!, phew, sorry about that. Anyway, Ace won't die, but Sakazuki REALLY needs to get a savage beating here, after all he's done. I swear, he's like a combination of Danzo and Kaname, tricking others and doing WHATEVER it takes to make sure his so-called justice gets carried out. Luffy will need to unlock his haoushoku to full power just for a solid punch in the face to send him flying. I wanted Lu to punch Sengoku, but if he can at least dislocate Sakazuki's face, I'll be satisfied. Anyway, keep it up with the reviews^^.

LOL I was thinking the same thing after i read this chp.. Im like Pls Luffy SUCKER PUNCH this mofo haha.. hopefully he'll use a haki base attack on that red dog :eyeroll

Yabe
February 06, 2010, 09:45 AM
Nice review!! :) You've also described my impression on Sakazuki's actions in this chapter pretty well (though the Tenryuubito are still the biggest assholes to me for their ridiculous and meaningless pride, and I'd place them in different class of "badness" to Sakazuki...) That admiral is just like the heartless wolf (dog is still pretty soft of a title to him). It is like he joins, or might be caught to join the marines in order to kill and fulfill his hunger. The craze is pretty much like Shiryuu's to Impel Down but Sakazuki seems to have more deepness in his madness and is more stable to the WG's side. I think he is an example of a great antagonist all in all.

I enjoyed the London Bridge joke, and also find your theory on the "soul" attack caused by Haki sounds convincing. Will have to wait more to see how it turns out to be...

Hurricane Roda
February 07, 2010, 09:22 AM
All I have to say is to keep going, your review is pretty good!! Congrats!:D